Fall Armyworm Tech Prize

  • Seoana Sherry-Brennan

    Seoana Sherry-Brennan

    Digital Communications and Prize Engagement Officer

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The prize sought digital tools and approaches that could provide timely, context-specific information that enable smallholder farmers and those who support them to identify, treat, and track incidence of fall armyworm in Africa.

It focused on sourcing and sparking innovations for African smallholder farmers and those that work with them. But given the global nature of this problem, we anticipate some of these solutions could have relevance beyond Africa.

The prize sought solutions that:

  • Enable smallholder farmers and those who support them to accurately identify incidence of fall armyworm in their crops.
  • Produce timely, context appropriate, and empowering insights for smallholder farmers to treat the incidence of fall armyworm.
  • Reduce productivity losses caused by fall armyworm among those using the tool or approach.
  • Ensure the appropriate and responsible use of pest management assessments, tools, and interventions.

Five prizes totaling $400,000 in prizes were given out. The grand prize winner, who received $150,000 was Fall Armyworm Virtual Advisor, which was created by Farm.Ink. The Fall Armyworm Virtual Advisor is an interactive solution that provides knowledge on how to identify, scout, and treat fall armyworm to its users. The tool is integrated into Farm.ink’s award-winning mobile service, Africa Farmers Club, an online group and chatbot that enables more than 150,000 farmers across Africa to find information about farming. Through the Facebook Messenger platform, the solution gamifies learning and after completing trainings, allows farmers to access the FAW Scouter, a progressive web app that guides farmers through the scouting process. It then provides farmers with personalized recommendations for how to treat fall armyworm on their farms.

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